Ico / Shadow of the Colossus Collection

Tuesday night I picked up the newly released Ico / Shadow of the Colossus collection for my PS3.

I had never played Ico; Shadow of the Colossus, however, I remember from the Playstation 2 and it was one of my favorite games for the platform. I was excited when I read these two games would be arriving in an affordable, remastered collection for PS3 this year. Ico was a difficult game to find so I never pursued it much, but having both games in a $40 package made purchasing it a no-brainer.

I gave both a spin. What immediately struck me is the music used in both games; Ico in particular makes effective use of atmosphere via music (or lack thereof). You start off in a castle, and there is nothing but the sound of the environment around you to keep you company during gameplay. It adds a layer of suspense to the already vast, mysterious castle you find yourself in.  Shadow of the Colossus effectively uses musical cues when approaching one of the colossi’s lairs, as well during the segue into your battle.

Graphically, both games look great. The graphics did not so much receive a graphical overhaul as much as updates to them look good in HD. The graphics still have a definite previous generation vibe to them, but a little more cleaned up and with a solid frame rate (though at times you still see the landscape being drawn out in Shadow, traveling around the game is smooth).

And of course, there is PSN Trophy support, which gives some of us a little extra enjoyment during replays.

I’m looking forward to immersing myself in Ico. With Shadow, it’s like returning to one of your favorite books that you haven’t read in a while. The game is just as rewarding to play as it was several years ago, and it looks great on the PS3. It will give fans of developer Team Ico something to hold them over until their next game, The Last Guardian, is finally released. Considering the scope and gameplay in these earlier games (and how well they’ve held up), I’m even more psyched for Guardian‘s release.

Anyone else pick this up? What did you think?